You don't need an expensive moth trap to find insects, even nocturnal ones.
Information on capture, collecting and recording techniques relevant to particular types of insects can be found in the insect orders section of this Web site.
Field equipment can be as cheap or as expensive as you like - many entomologists make their own equipment cheaply. The most important thing is to get out of the house and explore your surroundings. Insects can be found everywhere so, wherever you are, you can do some entomology!
The basic essentials for entomological field work include:
- a notebook and pen, for noting and recording insect species and behaviour
- tubes or pots, if you need to take a specimen home for examination (empty 35mm film canisters are ideal)
- a field guide to insects or a particular insect order
- a hand lens (of magnifying glass), for examining smaller specimens
Depending on which insects you want to study, and what exactly you might want to do, other equipment might include the following:
- a net, to capture and record flying insects
- a strong sweep net, if you want to sample insects on vegetation
- a pond net, if you want to sample aquatic insects
- a pooter, for capturing small insects such as beetles. The Bug Club section contains instructions for making a pooter.
- a moth trap, if you want to capture night-flying insects, especially moths
- a beating tray (or sheet or tray) to collect insects falling from shaken branches
- a tullgren funnel
Related links: Insect nets and beating trays
- B&S Entomological Services
- EFE & GB Nets
- NHBS biological equipment
- Watkins & Doncaster
Specialising in equipment for the Natural Sciences especially Entomology.
- Wild Care
Next: Entomology courses